The All Progressive Congress (APC), South Africa Chapter, said yesterday that the ruling party needs reawakening towards the 2023 general elections.
The National Chairman of APC, South Africa, Mr Bola Babarinde, disclosed this in a statement in Lagos, titled “Towards 2023, APC Needs Reawakening”.
Bolarinde said that the emergence of the APC in 2013 was necessitated by the need to counter the dominance of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Nigeria.
He said that it was in order to break this dominance that saw the coming together of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), the All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP), a faction of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) and the new PDP – a faction of the then ruling PDP, to form the All Progressives Congress (APC).
“The APC became a strong force and coupled with the fact that Nigerians had become disenchanted with the PDP, the APC coasted home to victory.
“However, cracks have started to appear in the unity of the APC as over time, selfish agendas, polarisation and factions have started to appear in the party.
“It has become glaring that many of those drawn into the APC do not share the aspirations to save Nigeria or to positively rebrand the country’s image globally.
“The leadership of the party has become polarised, with people aligning back to their initial PDP, CPC and ACN caucuses,” Bolarinde said.
He said the development has caused a conflict of interest, as the APC has taken the backstage.
According to him, the APC has become an orphan begging for attention, while those who are supposed to tend to its growth are more concerned with their inner caucus agendas.
Babarinde said: “Although, the APC has been lucky to have been given a second chance at governing Nigeria, no lessons were learned from the mistake of the first four years.
“Dedicated party members who had worked diligently towards the actualisation of the second term of office were again sidelined especially those in the Diaspora.
“The government has consistently failed to allow those in Diaspora contribute their quota towards the growth of the Nation.
“Even the most basic of requests by the Diaspora community for an enabling law that would allow them vote during national elections in Nigeria has become a subject of negative politicking till date.
“What does it take to pass such a positive legislation into law? – as doing this will give Nigerians outside the country a great sense of belonging.”
He added: “The nation is currently crawling on its promises to the people. We are too slow in implementing policies that will make life meaningful in our nation.
“All over the country, the story is the same – one of neglect and highest degree of insensitivity from the leadership. Basic things like hygienic water, good healthcare system and quality education are still difficult to achieve.
“Yes, we know Nigeria has been subjected to many years of neglect, and the rot in the system may not be easy to correct but our approach to correcting the rot is very slow.
“Things need to change in Nigeria and at a fast pace too. We propose that our leaders should take a ‘salary holiday’ as a sacrifice to move our nation forward.”
Babarinde urged party representatives across all levels to reduce their salaries and allowances “so the Nigerian populace will at least know our leaders are ready to sacrifice”.
He added that the current system of government is too expensive and unreasonable, saying nothing is wrong in a minister making use of his or her predecessor’s cars and office furniture?
The diaspora chairman said that Nigerian youths should be encouraged and assured of a better future by making them believe they are loved and there is concern about their future.